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LEGAL STAFFERS SOUND OFF
Legal Staffers Sound Off [7-19- 2004 by LawCrossing Staff] Do you have a question about working in the legal profession? About LawCrossing? No matter the topic, + send us an e-mail and we’ll be glad to answer it for you!
What is the difference between paralegals
I’m currently a receptionist and was won-
and legal assistants? (If any)
dering what my chances are of getting a job
Jennifer V., BA candidate 2005
as a legal secretary without proficiency in Excel or PowerPoint?
The difference can be huge or non-existent,
based on the firm type. Paralegals can be certified by the Bar association, but they
Not knowing Excel or PowerPoint will not
need not be, essentially a paralegal is an
hurt your chances too much, so long as you
attorney’s assistant, and performs many es-
can use a computer. It also depends on how
sential legal functions, but always under the
automated the firm you want to work at is.
supervision of an attorney. A legal assistant
Most legal staff members use law-specific
can do essentially the same work as an
software, and general basic word processing
administrative aide, sometimes taking care
programs. No need to bring attention to the
of filing or reception or assisting a paralegal.
fact that you don’t know these applications,
If you are a paralegal, you might want to cast
just emphasize your skills on your resume,
the net wide and apply for legal assistant
highlight the fact that you have worked in a
jobs as well. Some businesses will use these
law office and are familiar with the type of
terms interchangeably, especially for in
work that’s done and just apply. If you have
less experience you might want to take a Legal Assistant or Paralegal course.
Does anyone know of any contacts for jobs for word processors at the big firms?
Are there any temp jobs on this site?
Lisa M., Law Firm Receptionist
David E., Document Reviewer
You can send out resumes to the main
Yes, we list many part time and contract jobs.
contact information in the Staff Recruiting
Also if you look for recruiter jobs, you can get
section of law firms. These positions are in
in touch with some staffing agencies which
the “Other” and “Administrative Support”
place legal staff.
sections of the Legal Staff portion of the site. Is temping the best way to break into a job at What is the job market like out there right
one of the big firms?
now for paralegals?
Carol C., Paralegal
John K., BA English Not necessarily. Big firms recruit in various The market has been good, even when things
ways -- you can move from the bottom up,
were not so good for lawyers. In fact, the
you can consult your college or schools’ ca-
downturn in hiring attorneys gave a rise to
reer placement office and you can go through
hiring legal staff, unfortunately the lower
on campus interviews. Many large firms will
rate they need to be paid as compared to at-
hire students with Bachelors Degrees and
torneys is part of the reason.
good grades as staff members, the same way
they recruit attorneys.
Find the difference between paralegals and legal assistants and the contacts for jobs for word processors at the big firms. Know about the j...